Take a break from baked goods with this yummy cool treat that’s easy to make ahead. This recipe is adapted from a Maida Heatter dessert cookbook, originally published in the 1960s, when using frozen syrup-infused berries was more the norm than using fresh. Here we’re suggesting fresh fruit mixed with sugar OR Maida’s way, if you prefer.
6 oz. strawberry gelatin (e.g., Jell-O® brand)
2 c. boiling water
1 c. sour cream
1 pint strawberry ice cream
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 c. sliced strawberries, mixed with ¼ cup sugar OR one 10 oz. package halved
strawberries in syrup
2 pints raspberries, mixed with 1/3 cup sugar OR two 10 oz. packages whole
raspberries in syrup
2 c. heavy cream
2 Tbsp. confectioner’s sugar
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
Garnishes (optional): fresh mint leaves, shaved chocolate, sliced or whole berries
If using fresh berries, about an hour before assembling the Bavarian, mix with sugar and set aside to allow syrup to develop. Place the gelatin in a large bowl and add the boiling water. Stir to dissolve the gelatin. Add the sour cream and whisk until smooth. Cut the ice cream into the gelatin mixture and mix until smooth. Add the lemon juice. Add the strawberries and raspberries and mix. (If using frozen berries, use your hands to break up the frozen chunks into individual berries in the mixture.) Use a large spoon to divide into eight serving dishes, such as glass bowls or parfait or wine glasses. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. This will be ready to serve in three hours, or it may stand in the fridge overnight.
Before serving, prepare whipped cream. In a chilled bowl with chilled beaters, whip heavy cream, vanilla extract, and confectioner’s sugar, running the mixer on high until the cream keeps a peak. Prepared whipped cream several hours before serving.
When ready to serve, top each portion with fresh whipped cream and whatever additional garnishes you like. Consider offering a few crispy cookies to complement the custardy texture of this, fruity, cool dessert. Serve with spoons.